What Should We Talk About?

My favorite part of teaching was sharing evocative passages, affecting scenes, meaningful lyrics and innovative ideas with my students. We’d read, watch and listen to them, then think, talk and write about them.


It kept me from the curriculum. But then I’d think, Why isn’t this the curriculum? This is what kids need to learn! For example, after watching the scene where Tom Hanks scolds Geena Davis in A League of Their Own,


“It’s supposed to be hard. If it wasn’t hard, everyone would do it. The hard is what makes it great!”


I’d share it with students and explain why I showed it to them. And now I’m sharing passages, scenes, lyrics and ideas with you with the goal of getting a thought-provoking, life-enhancing conversations started.

Training for Hire (and More)

Do you hire experience or do you hire potential? Do you hire skills or do you hire character? To those who study history, it's obvious. Potential > Experience. Experience has value, but it's overrated. Lots of people have experience - experience at being mediocre. Character > Skills. A person of great character can learn a skill. But it's a tough task teaching character to grownups. Yet, a study of almost any profession will expose the follies of those who made the safe, comfortable decision to hire skills and experience over the riskier, pricklier choice of potential and character. Stories abound, but my favorite is Eddie DeBartolo Jr's choice of Bill Walsh to be his head coach in 1979. Ci